How do you define your target audience? According to The Balance Small Business, a target audience is a cluster of people interested in your products, services, or brand. In simpler terms, they are potential customers of your business. They may share the same location, gender, age, education, or other target customer demographics.             

Why do you need to have your ideal customers? The primary reason for this is that they help you create effective marketing strategies for your business. Your marketing efforts will not go to waste because you know who to deliver your message to and how you can reach your customers.

If you feel that you’re just randomly targeting anyone right now, it’s evident that you need guidance in understanding your target market. To help you out, we’ll discuss it in more detail below.

Identify and Define Your Target Market

1. Evaluate Your Current Customer Base

This is probably the first step you need to define a target audience. You need to recheck your existing customers’ demographics and know which areas they have in common. This will help you restructure your marketing strategies to increase leads and sales.

Once you can determine their statistical data, you can easily identify market segments and which target demographic to focus on. For example, you will improve target audience marketing by creating strategies based on their location or age.

Let’s take a Christian retreat center, as an example for this article. In this case, your audience would likely people between the ages of 30-50 with leadership positions at churches or other religious organizations.

2. Study Your Competitors

Competition is always present in a business. It may seem that competitors are a threat, but they can also help you in understanding your target market. Forbes published an article about how you can study your competitors and learn their best practices. The post mentioned:

  • Listing your competitors who are excellent at what they do
  • Talking to former employees of the competitors
  • Running Google Analytics and other similar tools to check competitors
  • Studying competitors’ sales funnels

3. Identify Your Target Market’s Motivations

This means determining what your audience is looking for. You need to know why they are buying from you and the information they want to know. This helps you produce content that your market finds beneficial.

For the Christian retreat planner audience, you might want to publish content on how to more effectively plan or promote a retreat.

You can go the extra mile by talking to these individuals and asking them what some of their major challenges are when planning a retreat. Also, include what improvements you still need to make their planning experience easier and less of a burden. Through this, you can create strong selling points when marketing your center and highlight the benefits of your business. You can also provide solutions to any of their logistical problems.

4. Learn the Major Benefits of Your Product or Service

Part of how you define your target audience is by mastering the benefits of what you are selling or providing. If you know your products and services well, you can quickly highlight their major benefits. These primary advantages will become your strong selling points, which are crucial for your sales success.

So, instead of marketing your retreats by their length or activities, which are features, focus on the benefits. This means people will have a meaningful experience focusing on their relationship with God and spiritual growth, and be less concerned about the retreat planning process. It’s also important to get feedback from participants to know what they like about your services or products.

If you can provide customer support, that’s even better. People can call you easily and ask simple questions about your retreats or center in general. Excellent customer service is an added feature and a great benefit you can highlight.

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5. Determine Your Market’s Psychographics

When you define your target audience, it is also crucial to determine their psychographics, which includes:

  • Behavior
  • Lifestyle
  • Interests
  • Hobbies
  • Values
  • Attitude
  • Personality/common characteristics

Understanding these aspects will help you know how you can persuade and convince them more effectively. For example, for your market’s behavior, you can ask how your retreat planning process takes care of some of the tasks the group leader would typically have to take on. If it seems like your retreat plans are helping relieve some of their burdens, then that’s a positive effect.

6. Know How To Maximize Marketing Channels

Do target audiences vary by channel? Not necessarily. You can market your brand using different channels and by targeting a single audience. It only depends on how you maximize the marketing channels available to help you increase conversions.

Your visitors may not know how email, PPC, social networks, SEO, or affiliate marketing works. However, they can be guided to check out the best ads that will convince them about your retreats or center. If they do not like the ads, then they will not interact with you.

Your best channel for this audience would be display advertising. This involves graphical ads you can post on mobile apps or websites that people can look at. Videos and images with text are effective marketing materials that can convince anyone.

7. Create Customer Avatars

Define target audience with the help of customer avatars or buyer personas. They are representations of your market that are fictional characters and help you identify their needs and wants. Creating customer avatars provides a better insight into who your market is, what they are looking for, and how your products or services help them. They serve as your guide in keeping you on the right track and preventing your marketing resources from going to waste.

Draw these avatars and include labels for customer demographics, which include income level and marital status, and psychographics. From there, you can map out how you can market your brand.

The Takeaway

These ways to define your target audience significantly help in identifying and understanding your market. When you do, you will have clearer guidance on how you can tweak your marketing strategies to increase sales. If you want more guidance on digital marketing and growing your business, Improve & Grow is a place you can count on. Plan your discovery meeting today!

Meet the Author:

Carl Lefever

Carl Lefever, Founder & Strategist

Carl is the founder of Improve & Grow, LLC, where his primary passion is helping businesses grow by improving their online marketing. He leads the team and is involved in developing and executing internet marketing strategies for our clients. Carl's background is in continuous improvement disciplines, focused on sales and marketing operations. He is a certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt. He is a proud father of 4 girls and loves traveling and supporting missions work.